7. Hurricane Sandy Tested Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Sustainability

Empire Stores

Due to its engineered topography, Brooklyn Bridge Park fared better than many other waterfront parks when Hurricane Sandy hit in 2012. However, in the aftermath of the storm, extra measures were taken to fortify the space in response to changes in city Building Codes, which were put into effect by Mayor Bloomberg and the City Council.

Designed to mitigate future damage from coastal flooding, the new regulations mandated that buildings be constructed from a higher base with all mechanicals and electricity housed above the new flood plain line. This policy was applied to all of the park’s development projects, including Empire Stores, which had its ground floor dug out and replaced with a concrete slab, and the Tobacco Warehouse, which was designed to meet the standards of “wet” flood proofing (assumes that water will flood into the building with minor damage after drainage).

Also, check out our behind-the-scenes look at the construction of Empire Stores.